Being the fan of an ultra-mega-super-star athlete on your favorite team can be hard at times. Every little thing, every comment, every action, gets scrutinized. Need proof? How about 'Dunk-Gate'.
I'm sure you have heard by now that LeBron James was "dunked on" by Jordan Crawford of Xavier University during his skills competition at the University of Akron. The pick-up game, which occurred in the evening after a day of drills, was being ILLEGALLY RECORDED by a couple of videographers trying to make a name for themselves.
When noticed, Nike confiscated the tapes, based on the rules violation, not the dunk!
"Nike has been operating basketball camps for the benefit of young athletes for decades and has long-standing policies as to what events are open and closed to media coverage. Unfortunately, for the first time in four years, two journalists did not respect our no videotaping policy at an after-hours pickup game following the LeBron James Skills Academy," said Nike spokesman Derek Kent on Wednesday.
Of course, the cameramen had another tale to tell.
Ryan Miller, who videotaped the dunk and had his tape confiscated, detailed the events to CBSSports.com.
"[Nike Basketball Senior Director Lynn Merritt] just said, 'We have to take your tape,'" Miller said. "They took it from other guys, too."
Miller, who is a freelancer, was at the camp in part for ESPNU. He also was getting material for Syracuse.com. Miller, who attended Syracuse, had been part of ESPNU's Campus Connection program, which uses college students to report on various sports events at their campuses. The tape that was confiscated belonged to Miller and not ESPN and he is not an ESPN employee.
Miller said he had been filming all day and only had his tapes confiscated after Crawford's dunk over James.
"LeBron called Lynn over and told him something," Miller told CBSSports.com. "That's how I knew his name was Lynn. LeBron said, 'Hey, Lynn. Come here.'"
Minutes later, Miller said Merritt demanded his tape.
"There's nothing I can think of besides LeBron just not wanting it online," Miller told CBSSports.com. "It's a good story to tell people, I guess. But then again, I'm kind of pissed. I lost my tape."
Of course, ESPN defending one of its own.
Listen, if LeBron James is that concerned about his image, then shame on him. However, if what Nike says is true, if there are rules about when and where video can be taken during the camp, and Miller broke the rules, than he's wrong, case closed.